Thứ Tư, 8 tháng 10, 2014

Nobel Prize For Chemistry 2014: Eric Betzig, Stefan W. Hell And William E. Moerner Honored For Development Of Super-Resolved Fluorescence Microscopy

The 2014 Nobel Prize in Chemistry was awarded on Wednesday to Eric Betzig, Stefan W. Hell and William E. Moerner for "the development of super-resolved fluorescence microscopy."
In the past, the use of microscopes was limited by a physical restriction; scientists could only see items that were larger than roughly half the wavelength of light (.2 micrometers). However, the groundbreaking work of the Nobel laureates bypassed the maximum resolution of traditional microscopes and launched optical microscopy into the nanodeminsion.
With nanoscopy, scientists could observe viruses, proteins and molecules there are smaller than 0.0000002 metres.
Hell, 52, of Germany, is the director at the Max Planck Institute for Biophysical Chemistry and the division head at the German Cancer Research Center in Heidelberg. He was honored for his work on fluorescence microscopy, a kind of nano-flashlight where scientists use fluorescent molecules to see parts of a cell. Later in his career, he developed the STED microscope, which collects light from "a multitude of small volumes to create a whole."
Moerner, a 61-year-old professor in chemistry and applied physics at Stanford University in California, is the recipient of the 2008 Wolf Prize in Chemistry, the 2009 Irving Langmuir Award and the 2013 Peter Debye Award. In 1989, he was the first scientist to be able to measure the light absorption of a single molecule. This inspired many chemists to begin focusing on single molecules, including Betzig.
Betzig, 54, the group leader at Janelia Farm Research campus at the Howard Hughes Medical Institute in Virginia, developed new optical imaging tools for biology. His work involved taking images of the same area multiple times, and illuminating just a few molecules each time. These images were then superimposed to create a dense super image at the nano level, The Times of India reported.
The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences, Stockholm awards the Nobel Prize in Chemistry annually to the person who shall have made the most important chemical discovery or improvement." It is one of five Nobel Prizes established by Alfred Nobel, inventor of dynamite, in his will in 1895.
Between 1901 and 2013, more than 560 Nobel Prizes were awarded to 876 people and organizations. Nobel laureates receive the title, a diploma, a gold medal and about $1.1 million in award money. If two winners are chosen for a single category, the prize is split in half. When more than two people or organizations are selected, the prize is distributed at the judges' discretion.
Since 1901, 105 Nobel Prizes in Chemistry have been awarded. The youngest person to become a Nobel laureate in chemistry was Frederic Joliot, who was just 35 when he received the prize in 1935 for his work in the synthesis of new radioactive elements.
Only four women have been awarded the chemistry prize, including Marie Curie who also won a Nobel in physics. And only one person -- Frederick Sanger -- has been awarded the chemistry prize twice.
Click here for a complete list of past laureates in this category.

Why People Have Stopped Downloading iOS 8

Hordes of people rushed to download iOS 8, Apple's latest operating system, when it came out last month. Within four days, 46 percent of people with active iOS devices -- iPhones, iPads and iPod Touches -- had downloaded the latest operating system, Apple said.
But it seems like nobody else joined them.
As of Oct. 5, more than two weeks after iOS 8 was released, that share had climbed by just 1 point, to 47 percent.
Before we go much further, it should be noted, as Business Insider's James Cook points out, that Apple uses a very unscientific -- BI's Cook calls it "slightly misleading" -- way of measuring iOS adoption. The company measures iOS share based on everyone who's accessed Apple's App Store over a certain period of time, so 47 percent of people who went to the store over a given period used devices running iOS 8. This is obviously flawed, because it means that only people who go to the App Store over a certain period are counted, and that could leave a lot of people out. A report from last year, Cook writes in BI, found that the majority of smartphone owners don't even download one app in one month.
So it's possible the adoption number is lower than Apple states, since Apple is only counting the people who have recently visited the App Store to download new apps and update the ones they have. These people are probably more likely to download the latest operating system within the first few weeks it's out.
In any case, why the huge slowdown? For one, Apple completely botched the first update of iOS 8, releasing software that rendered some people unable to make calls or use the fingerprint sensors on their phones.
Although Apple pulled the update within a few hours, and fewer than 40,000 people were affected, the company's rare misstep drew oodles of bad publicity. That could have made people wary of downloading any updates to their operating system.
And that wasn't even the first issue with iOS 8. Just after Apple released the update, which included the highly anticipated Health app, a hub for data from health-tracking devices, the company had to pull a host of third-party apps because of a bug. (This was actually one of the issues the botched update was supposed to fix.)
Also, iOS 8 just isn't that huge of a jump from iOS 7. Sure, it comes with a host of new features -- custom keyboards, smarter searching, beefed up iMessage capabilities, more photo editing options, and more -- but it's not a drastic redesign, like iOS 7 was. Your phone doesn't feel old or outdated if you haven't downloaded the new iOS.
And one of the bigger changes in the new iOS is that Touch ID, Apple's fingerprint sensor, can be used for more than just unlocking your phone and downloading apps and content from Apple's stores -- it can be used for unlocking apps, like and 1Password. But this update is really only relevant to iPhone 5S owners, as the other phones that come with Touch ID, the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus, come with iOS 8. So iPhone 4, 5 and 5C owners don't need the update for that feature.
As MacRumors notes, iOS 7 seemed to catch on more quickly. Mixpanel, an analytics company, reported last year that just 20 days after iOS 7 was released, nearly 70 percent of iOS devices were using it. Apple said in July that iOS 7 adoption had hit 90 percent, 10 months after it was released.